Human overpopulation and over-consumption has non-human species dying off at apocalyptic rates. And "the band played on" as far as humanity and our governments are concerned.
The latest episode in this saga is the decline in migratory river fish populations.
Populations of migratory river fish around the world have plunged by a “catastrophic” 76% since 1970, an analysis has found.
The fall was even greater in Europe at 93%, and for some groups of fish, with sturgeon and eel populations both down by more than 90%.
Species such as salmon, trout and giant catfish are vital not just to the rivers and lakes in which they breed or feed but to entire ecosystems. By swimming upstream, they transport nutrients from the oceans and provide food for many land animals, including bears, wolves and birds of prey.
The migratory fish are also critical for the food security and livelihoods of millions of people around the world, while recreational fishing is worth billions of dollars a year. The causes of the decline are the hundreds of thousands of dams around the world, overfishing, the climate crisis and water pollution.For the past decade reports have been pouring in about the precipitous collapse of terrestrial species - birds, mammals, insects, reptiles - and marine life - fish, mammals and sea birds - that have declined in raw numbers by well over half since 1970. At the same time, species are falling extinct at hundreds of times the normal base rate.
You might have imagined our leadership, world wide, would have set aside their obsessive quest for perpetual exponential growth just long enough to ponder what this alarming collapse portends for humanity in the decades ahead, but that would be wishful thinking. If these other species are experiencing collapse, are we next? If not, why, how?